Wildlife of Armenia

Persian Leopard

Wildlife of Armenia – Wikipedia

The fauna in Armenia is diverse given the country’s relatively small geographicL size, owing to the varied habitats created by the area’s mountainess terrain. Armenia is an important area for migratory animals, about 350 different bird species were recorded in the country. Many of the world’s domesticated animals originated in the area Armenia is located in, and the mouflon, the ancestor of domesticated sheep, is present there. Research suggests that about a quarter of the animal species in Armenia are internationally endangered. The mouflon are suffering a great population decline due to poaching and habitat loss, and the Sevan trout, which made up thirty percent of the fish in Lake Sevan, have virtually disappeared.

Southern and south-western Armenia remains the last stronghold for survival of the Persian leopard in the whole Caucasus, in part due to its connectivity with Iran where the main portion of the Persian leopard population exists. The total population size in Armenia numbers no more than 10-20 individuals, including adults, sub adults and cubs.

Armenia: diverse landscapes, rich biodiversity (IUCN)

 

The geographical location, geological complex structure and location of Armenia at the junction of major biogeographical zones have contributed to the evolution of rich biodiversity and different types of natural ecosystems in this country. See also  Ecotourism takes off in Armenia

Hyenas discovered in Armenia? Researchers find carcass, tracks (2011 news)

The carcass of a striped hyena has been found in southern Armenia. The find represents the region’s first confirmed hyena observation in over 60 years. The major cause of the species’ extinction in Armenia was the almost complete conversion of suitable hyena habitat into cropland.

Guide to the Birds of the Caucasus

Persian Leopard – Wikipedia

In Armenia, the Persian leopards live in the juniper sparse forests and, to a lesser extent, in arid and mountain grasslands, subalpine and alpine meadows. Their haunts are extremely rough and rocky places with plenty of cliffs. This predator uses the same trails during regular movements, so knowing where they are, the researcher can find the evidence of leopard existence such as scats, tracks and scrapes. The leopard in Armenia is threatened by disturbance, poaching, and wild fire, but which of these factors are most stressful for this cat is still unclear. The leopard can also be found in the Shikahogh State Preserve.

Armenian wildlife in danger of extinction

About 60 percent of wild animal life in Armenia is threatened according to a new report published in 2008

“The major threats to biodiversity are directly or indirectly connected with human influence. The major processes threatening it are the loss of living environment and its change, overuse of biological resources, pollution, etc. All these threats minimize the population of the flora and the fauna, and cause loss of species, degradation of landscapes and ecosystems,”.

Environemental news about Armenia – good archive from Armenianow.com.

WWF proposes unique system to assure protection of orchards and of endangered species

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Armenian Office has found a solution for protecting orchards in Meghri, Syunik province, from brown bears without harming the animals, which are registered in the Red Book of Endangered Species.

Six residents of Nrnadzor, Shvanidzor and Alvank villages are paid 200 Euros each to protect orchards before the end of the harvesting in late November, using whistles and special signals during night-watches and hope to drive the bears back to forests. Employees of Arevik National Park, who deal with security issues of animals in the region, will support them.

Armenian Tree Project

Armenia Tree Project, a non-profit program based in Watertown and Yerevan, conducts vitally important environmental projects in Armenia’s impoverished and deforested zones and seeks support in advancing its reforestation mission. Since 1994, ATP has made enormous strides in combating desertification in the biologically diverse but threatened Caucasus region. Over 3,500,000 trees have been planted and restored, and hundreds of jobs have been created for Armenians in seasonal tree-regeneration program

DA Tours: Fauna

Armenia’s mountainous terrain creates numerous climate zones and microclimates, providing the country with a biodiversity that belies its small area. For example, Armenia is home to over 365 bird species during the year, compared to 400-500 across the entire European continent. Armenia provides an important passage and resting sites for migratory animals and birds. Furthermore, Armenia is located in a region where many of the western world’s domesticated plants and livestock originated. The country is also home to the ancestor of the domesticated sheep, the mouflon, as well as wild varieties of barley that were among the first to be domesticated in Mesopotamia. The Armenian forests in the Northeast, around Jermuk and in the South of the country around Kapan, are believed to be populated by wolves, lynxs and species of the Caucasian bear.

Forest copper mine triggers controversy in Armenia

A company has been given permission in Armenia to establish a copper mine in Teghut Forest sparking off a struggle between industry and environmentalists. Teghut Forest supports a large number of Armenia’s native species, including the Syrian Brown Bear and the Short-toed Eagle.